Discipline will save you on the days you don’t feel motivated.
I have always been the type of person that looks at successful women and wondered what their journey was like. How? How did you get over 50K followers? How did you afford that bag? How did you lose over 30lbs? How did you start growing your business? What’s the secret sis?
After watching and listening to DominiqueDaDiva, Midday Personality at 93.9 WKYS, I was completely captivated by her energy and magnetic personality. She can light up any room she walks in, but I was curious to discover how she managed to grow her brand. DominiqueDaDiva has the #1 Midday show across all genres in the DMV. I quickly learned that the formula is simple, but the struggle is real. You must work hard, and be willing to take risks.
What sparked your interest in radio?
I wanted to be a singer, so I figured if I got into radio I could befriend everyone in the industry and put myself on. (Laughter)
Aside from that, I was all about the music when I was younger. I loved Janet Jackson, Aaliyah, Whitney Houston. I loved the Apollo, and I just knew I was going to be the next Kiki Shepard. I was definitely a social butterfly.
How did you get on the radio?
Once I was a Sophomore in college I began calling my local radio station for internship opportunities. After being turned down for my age, my persistence wouldn’t allow me to take no for an answer. I waited another year before contacting the station again, and I secured an internship.
[bctt tweet=”I served as a sponge, grabbing hold of every aspect of the business, and soaking up any information I could use to grow from that experience.” username=”ladylauraco”] By the time I graduated from Virginia State University I was working as the on-air weekend personality at WBTJ-106.5 The BEAT.
What are some early risks you took in your career?
One of my first goals was to be on-air. Once I achieved that I wanted to work on air full-time with benefits. I was working at a local daycare center to supplement my income. I worked so hard that I didn’t even have time to spend the money I was making. I saved about six months worth of living expenses. So one day I marched into the daycare center with my resignation in hand. I quit.
I hadn’t made it to radio full-time just yet, but I knew in my heart that one day I would. It was scary, but all you need is a little faith. I’ve made decisions in my career based on who I want to be, not who I am at the moment.[bctt tweet=”I can’t believe I am where I am today and how far I’ve come. I’ve sacrificed a lot. I’ve missed out on events. I’ve been broke. All of that. ” username=”ladylauraco”] What was the moment you realized you were good at your job?
I was at the daycare center and my phone was ringing off the hook. When I finally answered, my colleague, told me the VP of Urban Programming had great things to say about me in a meeting. Everyone was bigging me up, and saying I was amazing. That’s how I knew I was on the right track.
Why did you make the decision to move to Los Angeles?
I no longer wanted to be the big fish in a small pond. I already had the #1 midday show on WOWI-103 JAMZ in Norfolk, VA, but that was in a smaller market. You can only grow your career by being a small fish in a big pond.
Moving to Los Angeles was definitely an eye-opener for me in all aspects of my life. I learned a lot about myself. Los Angeles is a very expensive city to live in. I totaled my car within the first month of moving there, so I was scared to drive, and it was just another hurdle I had to overcome. That’s when I realized who my friends were.
When I moved to Los Angeles I was on Dash Radio where I had creative freedom over the content I put out. I was also working for a marketing firm where I learned the ins and outs of social media, and how to use it to my advantage. I took all of this information and built my own app, called Da Daily Dirt.
What has your experiences taught you?
Your brand should be the most important thing to you. Go where you are valued and people see your talent. I also learned when to say no.
How has your career impacted your dating life? What’s the ideal man that DomiqueDaDiva is looking for?
I tend to date younger. (Laughter)
The ideal man for me is someone who is passionate about their career. It could essentially be anything. Actually, I’m definitely not going for the young SoundCloud rapper, but someone who is passionate (Laughter). He also can’t be intimidated by me. I’m a boss at work. I don’t need to be the boss at home.
What do you think makes 93.9 WKYS special?
Our Program Director is young and connected to what’s going on in media. We are also an all women’s lineup, so we have representation on the station all day long. We are unique in that way.
What would you say to someone who is interested in working in radio?
People don’t realize that it’s not easy. You have to put a lot of work in. Don’t be afraid to put your head down, be focused, and work. [bctt tweet=”Be prepared for the ugly grind. ” username=”ladylauraco”]What is next for DominiqueDaDiva?
I am launching a new series with Chey Parker (@iamcheyparker). It will be an online show that will cover entertainment, lifestyle, fashion, and hip hop. It will be a visual podcast. Stay tuned for that in Spring 2018.
Everyone’s journey to success is different. For DominiqueDaDiva, it is clear that it took a lot of discipline and hard work to get to where she is. Now, eight years later, she is apart of an all women’s line up on 93.9 WKYS-FM and has the #1 Midday show in the DMV across all genres. Dominique shared she hopes to empower women to have a voice across all media platforms. There were no shortcuts here. You have to work hard and remain consistent to achieve your goals.